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Food delivery services thrive during COVID-19 in Vietnam

Thursday, March 19, 2020, 11:02 GMT+7
Food delivery services thrive during COVID-19 in Vietnam
Delivery drivers queue up outside a restaurant to pick up customers’ orders in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

While the majority of businesses shamble in the shadow of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) epidemic in Vietnam, food delivery services are on a roll.

As more Ho Chi Minh City residents confine themselves to their homes over COVID-19 fear, food stalls and restaurants in downtown areas remain packed with customers, most of whom are delivery workers in vibrant uniforms waiting to pick up someone else’s order.

Facing the circumstances, food businesses are rapidly remodeling themselves.

Instead of focusing on the dine-in experience, many food stalls have gone takeaway-only for fear of infection risks from large gatherings.

Changes can also be witnessed around lunchtime at office buildings, where food delivery is in vogue.

“I usually eat out with my colleagues for lunch, but these days, out of fear for infection when going outside or entering crowded places, we have switched to ordering food online for convenience and safety,” said Nguyen Quynh Anh, an office worker in District 1.

An office worker receives food from a Grab driver in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

An office worker receives food from a Grab driver in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, stimulating online commerce channels and mobilizing the participation of e-commerce and logistics platforms are among the initiatives employed by the ministry to cope with COVID-19.

The novel coronavirus, which first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, has infected almost 220,000 people and killed nearly 9,000 globally, according to Ministry of Health statistics.

Vietnam has diagnosed 76 with the disease, of whom 16 had fully recovered and been discharged from the hospital by February 26.

Sixty cases have been reported in the Southeast Asian country since March 6 after Vietnam had gone three weeks without any new infection.

Among the cases being treated, 22 are foreigners, including 13 Britons, one Irishman, two Germans, one from the Czech Republic, one Latvian, one U.S. citizen, and three French nationals.

A takeaway food stall is packed with Grab delivery drivers in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

A takeaway food stall is packed with Grab delivery drivers in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Drivers of food delivery service Baemin pick up orders at a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Drivers of food delivery service Baemin pick up orders at a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

A Grab driver takes a photo of a restaurant bill before delivering food to customers in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

A Grab driver takes a photo of a restaurant bill before delivering food to customers in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Delivery drivers are seen outside a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City, Vienam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Delivery drivers are seen outside a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

An English sign posted outside a restaurant in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam announcing its takeaway-only policy. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

An English sign posted outside a restaurant in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam announcing its takeaway-only policy. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Delivery drivers wait for their orders to be prepared at a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Delivery drivers wait for their orders to be prepared at a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

A Baemin delivery driver cleans his hands with hand sanitizer at a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

A Baemin delivery driver cleans his hands with hand sanitizer at a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

An office worker receives ordered food from a Grab delivery driver in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

An office worker receives food from a Grab delivery driver in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

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